UMES TAKE HOWARD DOWN TO FINAL SECONDS
Feb. 21, 2012
Princess Anne, Md. --Ronald Spencer scored a game-high 14 points and was a rebound short of finishing the night with a double-double performance for the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. Teammate Hillary Haley contributed 11 points in the Hawks 53-51 loss to Howard University Monday.
UMES opened the game with a score by Haley and minutes later he would convert two free throws to tie the game for the first time. Haley was 4-of-5 (.800) at the free-throw line for the Hawks, captured three boards and had two assists.
The Hawks did much of its first half scoring on fast breaks created by steals from Louis Bell and Percy Woods, as well as scores in the paint by Tyler Hines and Ronald Spencer. Bell and Woods each had three steals on the night. Bell finished the night with just four points in 13 minutes. Woods finished the night with seven points, three assists and four rebounds for the Hawks by intermission.
Entering halftime UMES held a seven-point (31-24) lead and had made 40 percent (11-of-27) of its shots from the field. Spencer scored just two points in the first half, but in a stretch of eight minutes he scored nine of the Hawks' 11 second half points.
Spencer was perfect at the line (4-of-4) and made 5-of-9 (.556) of his shots from the field. UMES held Howard scoreless at intermittent times, but allowed the Bison to control the rebounding battle in the first half (23-18). Eight of Spencer's nine rebounds came on the offensive glass, and would help close the rebounding gap to 39-37 in favor of Howard.
UMES held at most a nine point lead (39-30) in 17 total minutes from the 4:39 mark in the first half until Howard came within one point (43-42) at 7:07. Spencer would tie that game with a lay-up at 5:02, but that would be the last time the Hawks would be even with Howard for the game.
The score was tied six times and the lead changed four other times during the contest. With the ball back in the Hawks possession, Ishaq Pitt would tally of four points in the last 2:12 of the game. With UMES down 53-49, Pitt grabbed a rebound from a Howard player and scored a lay-up in the paint giving the Hawks its fifty-first point. The Hawks forced a turnover at with 16 seconds in the game, but could not get off a good enough shot to tie or win.
Notable statistics, UMES was 13-of-14 (.928) from the free-throw line, its best percentage this season with at least 10 attempts. The Hawks finished with 10 total assists by six different players, and the team shot 33.3 percent from the field for the game.